Tag Archives: media reform

Institutions Part V: News Media Lapses in Modern Times


The news media in America are spinning out of control, caught up in a powerful funnel cloud of self-righteousness, self-interest, a loss of journalistic identity, and wild-eyed illusions of grandeur about saving the planet from evil.

The media are not the enemy of the people; not by a long shot; but they are their own worst enemy, exhausting their credibility and abandoning the character and measured judgment that not too long ago was the hallmark of American journalism.

The free press is just one of several institutions absolutely fundamental to our system of self-government and our open society experiencing decline, from the Legislative and Executive branches of government to public and private education, organized religion, community, charity, and the family unit. Continue reading

Its Time for Media Reform: Part II


Apparently, it’s okay for the media to pay their sources, to buy news.  ABC news does it and so do others. 

 More proof of that came on Sunday when CNN’s Reliable Source Anchor Howard Kurtz asked one of his panelists about ABC paying $200,000 to the central figure in a news story for information and material that would make its news broadcasts more appealing and therefore more competitive.Lauren Ashburn of Ashburn Media responded that the high demand for ad revenues among news operations is moving the needle toward that kind of checkbook journalism.  The answer she said was to find ways to generate more ad revenue so the news operations would not be forced to buy and bribe their way to bigger ratings.

By that analysis, it is okay then for members of Congress to exchange campaign contributions for earmarks in legislation, because the pressure to raise so much money for their campaigns leaves them no other choice. No, actually, it is not okay.  It is against the law.  Checkbook journalism should be, too.

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Media Reform: Its Time Must Come





part one

            Two rather bizarre diatribes by public figures recently broke through the health care coverage for a brief moment and focused much needed attention on the plight of the news media.

            The first was an emotional outburst by Congressman Patrick Kennedy of Rhode Island against the media for not covering the House of Representatives debate on a resolution on the U.S. role in Afghanistan.  The second was a surprisingly vicious attack on Roger Ailes, president of the Fox News Network by Howell Raines, former executive editor of the New York Times, which ran, oddly enough, on the editorial pages of the Washington Post.

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